Disasters. Heatwaves. Brexit. Political turmoil. It feels like society really is crumbling. Could the end of days be just around the corner?
And it shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. American Horror Story – which begins its eighth season on FOX on 27th September at 10pm, appropriately called “Apocalypse” – has been warning us for years. Don’t believe us? Here are seven ways American Horror Story is predicting that the apocalypse is coming.
The Anti-Christ Is Here
As Seen In: Season 1, “Murder House”
In The Show: Fathered by the evil seed of ghostly high school shooter Tate (Evan Peters – in full BDSM “Rubber Man” costume no less) and delivered by Dr. Montgomery (Matt Ross) – an already-dead quack with a penchant for Frankenstein-type experiments – baby Michael is about as anti-christy as bonnie, bouncing, bloodthirsty babes come. After being adopted by murdering neighbour Constance, Michael proves his evil credentials by slaughtering the nanny. Kids, eh?
In Real Life: OK, so no Satanic cult has announced the birth of the anti-christ just yet. But the world’s in such a state, there must be one amongst us already.
The Sins Of The Father Are Being Repeated
As Seen In: Season 2, “Asylum”
In The Show: Bloody Face is a deranged serial killer who tortures and flays women – complete with a mask made from his victims’ skin. He’s revealed to be Briarcliff Asylum psychiatrist, Dr Oliver Thredson (Zachary Quinto). But even a bullet to the back of Thredson’s head can’t stop Bloody Face’s reign of bloody terror. Johnny (Dylan McDermott), the son of Thredson and would-be victim Lana (Sarah Paulson), takes up the mantle of Bloody Face years later for a new reign of terror.
In Real Life: Global warming’s about to bake us all to death. Natural disasters are wreaking havoc with the world. And political turmoil brings us ever closer to World War 3. All thanks to the ecological crimes and political legacy of past generations. But has that stopped us committing the same crimes? Nope. Instead we continue polluting, arguing amongst ourselves, and generally setting out to destroy the world. Just hand over the ol’ skin mask…
Society Is Ready To Burn Itself At The Stake
As Seen In: Season 3, “The Coven”
In The Show: The Coven is a secret society of New Orleans witches – survivors of the Salem witch trials – who burn, kill, and condemn each other in the pursuit of being all powerful. If that’s not bad enough, lead witch Cordelia (Sarah Paulson) stabs herself in the eyes with garden shears to get “second sight” powers. Ouch and double ouch.
In Real Life: Even with a pair of stabbed out eyes, these witches couldn’t be a more insightful allegory for modern society if they dropped toe of frog in the cauldron and said, “show us a perfect example of how the world is tearing itself apart”. Themes of racism, religion, oppression, and sexual violence punctuate its inherent message: can’t we all just get along? The fact that the Coven is back for the eighth apocalyptic season says it all. The end is most definitely nigh.
All The Worst People Have Come Together
As Seen In: Season 5, “Hotel”
In The Show: James March (Evan Peters) – famed serial killer and former proprietor of Hotel Cortez – holds a ghostly dinner party, where he plays host to a collection of America’s most despicable murderers: Richard Ramirez, John Wayne Gacy, Aileen Wuornos, Jeffrey Dahmer, and the Zodiac Killer. Regrettably, Charles Manson can’t make it.
In Real Life: It seems like something from a dark fantasy, but if you want to find all the worst people in the world in one place, a quick look on social media will do the trick. The constant bickering, trolling, snow-flakery, and incessant meme sharing is sure to bring about the end of the world.
Reality Can Be Murder
As Seen In: Season 6, “Roanoke”
In The Show: Season Six reimagines the show as a paranormal documentary, recounting the story of a family terrorised by ghostly colonists. But the success of the doc sees the family and the actors who played them return to the haunted house for a follow-up Most Haunted-style series. Which is when the bodies start piling up.
In Real Life: “Celebrity is a mask that eats into the face,” said John Updike. “And slices your throat, stabs you to death, and buries you in the woods,” he should have also said. Because Roanoke is more than just a horror story – it’s also a razor-sharp satire on reality TV, fame, and media exploitation. It predicts a different kind of apocalypse, not brought on by nuclear weapons, natural disasters, or the wrath of God, but by something even more terrifying: celebrity-crazed folk willing to do anything for their five minutes of fame…
Politics Will Kill Us All
As Seen In: Season 7, “Cult”
In The Show: The wake of the 2016 US election leaves the town of Brookfield Heights, Michigan divided and in a state of turmoil. While Ally (Sarah Paulson) is plagued by evil clowns (who may or may not be real), alt-right crusader Kai (Evan Peters) turns his political aspirations into a full-blown Charles Manson-inspired cult.
In Real Life: It’s not hard to see how Season 7 of the horror series is a harbinger of political unrest – something that seems to be fast-tracking us towards civil war/certain doom/nuclear holocaust/never-ending arguments about Brexit around the dinner table at Christmas.
The Apocalypse Will Be Televised
As Seen In: Season 8, “Apocalypse”
In The Show: As always with American Horror Story, the upcoming season is a mystery. All we know is that it will crossover with seasons 1 ‘Murder House’ and 3 ‘Coven’. Oh, and it’s about the end of the world.
In Real Life: With American Horror Story’s knack of predicting impending doom, gloom, and apocalyptic goings-on, let’s assume the trailer is a warning to humanity and be very afraid when the new series lands on FOX this month. In other words, it’s time to start stocking up on supplies and building that emergency shelter.
AMERICAN HORROR STORY: APOCALYPSE premieres on FOX on 27th September at 10pm. Catch up with AMERICAN HORROR STORY SEASON 7: CULT, available now on Blu-ray and DVD and AMERICAN HORROR STORY: THE COMPLETE SEASONS 1-6 is available now on DVD.